CUPID IN SPACE
A story about the tv show, Cupid
by Steve 0yervidez
"The dream is always the same, even though it never sticks with
me... not the details anyway..."
A woman's voice spoke against a dark, infinite night. Then suddenly,
there were strange colors, dim in the blackness, moving and twisting.
voice continued to recount the dream.
"We're traveling, hurtling through this endless vacuum. And then,
there are stars. My heart beats faster as they pass. I can feel them,
without my body. Like they're the only things left..."
Suddenly points of light appear in that vast darkness, some shifting
closer, passing by on either side.
"Hurtling through space. Not an unexpected dream, considering.
But somehow... it's like I'm holding my breath, or waiting to breathe,
waiting for the touch of air, of open sky, like something I've never
felt. I can't feel my body anymore. But I know I'm moving... And then
it appears, beautiful in the distance..."
Suddenly a pinpoint of extremely bright, distant light flares into
existence. Stars are still racing past nearby, but the light is further
yet getting closer.
"It's this pure, incredible light. The kind of light that fills
every corner of your soul. Lifting you, sending you soaring across the
stars. As that gorgeous light gets closer, I wonder for a second if I'm
dying, if reaching it would be the end. But then I realize, maybe
reaching it would be when my life would finally be beginning..."
The stationary light suddenly blossomed brighter for a brief moment,
set against the dark star filled sky. And then it started to shift
sideways, moving quickly amongst the falling stars, trailing a tail
behind it like a comet.
"It's only then that the light starts moving. And I understand
I'm not going towards it, it is coming towards me. And I'm afraid...
Sparks start falling, obscuring the stars..."
Yellow points of sparks fell even closer than the passing stars,
growing thick, blocking out everything. The distant bright light is
suddenly coming head on, racing past the sparks, knocking them aside,
before it suddenly moves aside and out of sight.
"And then... Fireworks."
The stars stop moving, going still against the backdrop of space. Then
in the void before them, huge, colorful explosions suddenly burst to
life, crisscrossing the starry night sky, blossoming in brilliant
colors like flowers.
"Something white, soft... twists and flutters past my sight. But
it's too close. I can't see what it is. And for a moment... I feel at
peace. But then the fireworks fade, turning into plain, ordinary
lights. Lights I see everyday."
Ceiling lights flickered on across an arching, smoothly fitted, metal
ceiling, gently recessed within the metal to give a clean,
efficient glow. Across the room, a pair of computer screens powered up,
accompanied by a low, comforting hum of energy from high tech
machinery. More displays
glowed brighter and came to life. The sequence seemed almost like a
living being waking up. The activity moved in a wave along the walls of
the circular room, blinking, system after system switching
Between two screens, a smooth
rectangular recess was fronted with glass, revealing only darkness. And
then slowly, a light grew in the shadows within, revealing an upright
mattress, covered with a swirl of sheets, a pillow, and the slender,
beautiful figure of a woman. As the light slowly grew around the edge
of the mattress, her shape became more defined beneath the sheets,
lying unconcerned against the vertical mattress.
"And then the dream is gone, and in the end I have to let it go.
And face the day..."
In the wall nearby, suddenly a metal panel slid smoothly upward, a
mechanical bar swinging out with clothing, a towel.
"... and all the reality that implies."
Within the recess, the woman looked like she was floating in water, the
black tresses of her hair waving effortless through the air beside her
serene, sleeping face was resting comfortably, floating black against
her ivory skin. Her body shifted under the vertical sheets, still
asleep. The entire bed was still upright within the recess, standing on
its end. But the woman lay perfectly flat against it, not falling
downward at all.
Across the room, a red light blinked rapidly, and yet another small
recess slid aside to reveal a waiting cup, that was quickly filled with
a dark, black liquid, warm steam rising.
Beside the rectangular glass recess across the room, one of the monitor
screens began to blink as well, words flashing across its surface. WAKE
UP INITIALIZING. FIELD MATCHING IN PROGRESS.
Within the recess, the woman's floating shape... almost imperceptibly
began to move. Everything began to fall gently sideways onto her
sleeping form, as if getting heavier. Her hair fell soft beside her
face. The sheets that had been loosely nestled around her body seemed
to cling more carefully, sideways against her upright form.
The screen display in the wall beside her suddenly glowed green,
switching to form the word MATCHED. There was a soft hiss, and the
glass recess that enclosed the mattress slid aside, disappearing into
"Sometimes it's hard to wake up. To come back to real life..."
Mechanical motors whirred quietly behind the upright mattress, the
woman still resting effortlessly against it as if it were perfectly
normal. Then the mattress began to move. The displayed on the wall
beside the recess changed again to LEVELING. Slowly the mattress was
sliding out, the bottom edge moving faster than the top, so that the
angle of the mattress gently changed from vertical to horizontal as it
entered into the room. The screen kept track, numbers scrolling down,
an image of the bed shifting angles until it started to become parallel
to the floor below, settling, until finally...
There was a comfortable sigh from the woman's lips. Her eyes fluttered
open and she woke up, her brown irises staring up at the ceiling above
her. Then rom the ceiling came a computer voice, speaking in a
strangely comforting, yet androgynous voice.
"Good morning, Dr. Allem..."
Claire Allen rose out of bed, still trying to wake up. Once she left
the mattress, it slid back, going quietly vertical again, moving into
"It's not Allem, it's Allen." she corrected for what seemed the
"Yes, Dr. Allem..."
She reached out without looking, grabbing the cup of coffee in the
small wall alcove without thought as she passed, done out of habit. She
yawned, speaking to the air.
The glass recess behind her changed again, the mattress sliding away
and completely sealed off as it was replaced by tile walls on all the
other three sides. Nozzles open up above, and a soft mist cascaded down
in the now confined recess in the wall.
Claire sighed. "Never waits for me to get in..." she muttered.
Ignoring the running shower, Claire instead walked towards a bare wall,
smooth and metallic.
"Sometimes it's easier to accept the facade of what is. Or to
come to grips with the fact that this home... isn't."
She pushed a button on the bare wall, and another panel slid aside,
revealing a portal, darkness beyond it, stars glinting, and sliding
A device glowed, edged by blue lines of light. The small display came
on and a music began to play, filling the air. It was just a few guitar
chords for several measures, as Claire turned from the starry view to
start her day, listening. Then a voice began to sing.
Last time I talked to you, you were lonely and out of place.
You were looking down on me, lost out in space...
"So we're all out here
searching, searching for our new home. Outcasts, roaming amongst the
The bridge deck was quiet,
blinking with lights, dazzling to the uninitiated, but familiar to the
crew which worked there, every display in the dim light full of
meaning. Everything was smooth, futuristic, alive with screens of
graphical illumination. A crew member looked away from the huge
veiwport before him, switching his gaze to his display and away from
the stars streaming by. Something blinked brightly on his display, and
a large man came to stand at his shoulder, waiting in anticipation, but
still looking at the stars. The crew member seemed almost bored,
reading displays, manipulating controls. Then he looked to the man
standing beside him, well practiced in what he had said hundreds of
"Dropping out of FTL,
Captain. We've arrived."
"Very well, ensign..."
The ensign shook his head
with a smile, wondering why they even bothered with those old titles
anymore. The woman's voice continued to narrate.
"But in the end, I
guess what we're really looking for is meaning. Isn't that what any
home really is, no matter how long it takes to find it?"
Suddenly the stars went still
outside the ship, going into the unbelievable distances far away, and
suddenly the dim interior of the bridge was bathed in a rich, orange
light. As one, the whole crew looked up from their stations, watching
out the huge veiwport in wonder, in anticipation.
Space was filled with a
sprawling vista, a swarm of beautiful color illuminated by a bright,
distant star, glaring in the system the had just arrived in. It was
beautiful, a canvas of color. Then, the massive bulk of the ship came
into view, gliding serenely, huge beyond belief and sparkling with
lights. As it moved towards the sun, orange rays of light shot past it
in beams, outlining it there as the sun shone through stellar dust. The
giant ship flew effortlessly, turning slightly in the bright swath of
color streaming past it.
"Twelve degrees to starboard
ensign.... There it is."
The shadows shifted on the
bridge as the ship turned, and suddenly more displays came to life.
There was a planet there, beautiful in the silent star field of space.
The music was still playing, a man singing, as the Captain nodded,
content. "Start it..."
We laid underneath the
stars, Strung out and feeling brave
The ensign and the rest of
the crew got to work. After a few seconds, invisible energy was criss
crossing through space, probing, scanning. The Captain and everyone
else seemed to pause with anticipation. Several screens started
flashing the same word as they waited, the computer updating.
Everyone waited, able to do
nothing else. Out of nowhere, the woman continued to speak, as the scan
"But like anytime you
try to find answers in life.... the journey is often filled with
Suddenly the screens changed, and all eyes on the bridge switched to
them, waiting hopefully. But then, the displays came back with a new
word, and as one, the crew seemed to lower their eyes, hope lost.
Everyone fell back into their chairs in disappointment, even the
Captain's shoulders dropped. With a sigh, he looked away from the
planet, issuing orders. "Ok. You know the drill. Takes us further out
to system edge near the Oort cloud, so we can set up the next hop."
"Yes, sir." The ensign replied dispiritedly.
The huge ship was a shadow as it turned, still caressed in the glow of
the sun, but now, it seemed almost mournful, as if it were a living
thing, looking for something it hadn't found. Sadly it flew towards the
edge of the system, leaving the beautiful vista and the planet behind.
I watched the red orange
glow, I watched you float away...
In her quarters still getting ready for her day, Claire was at the
window, sunlight on her face. But then, the ship began to turn away,
like it had a hundred times before at a hundred other planets, and then
she knew. When her ship information display beeped behind her, she
didn't even need to turn around to read it, already knowing what it
said. Like everyone else on the ship, she turned from the new planet,
The woman's voice continued.
"Still... life goes on. As it must. We all find ways to continue.
To make things seem as normal as possible. Even in the most non normal
of circumstances, we all find ways to gather comfort, stability, trying
to regain those things that remind us of old lives... And yet, some
things it seems, never really change."
Claire was walking down a crowded, street wide hallway on the massive
ship, one like so many others. The air was buzzing with activity as she
read a small newspad glowing in her hands. Its bright text scrolled
with constant information, blinking about the recent strike by the
sewage workers union, or new rises in compartment rental costs, the
current ship wide political race, or latest holo-entertainments
announcements. She sighed, bumped and jostled in the confusion of the
main thoroughfare, but more than used to it. Claire paused, everyone
else flowing past her as she looked up. But she saw only the ceiling
lights of the ship, as her nose tickled with the aromas of 'outdoor'
cafes. In the end, the passageway was as big and crowded as any city
Down here in the
atmosphere, Garbage and city lights
You've gone to save your tired
soul, You've gone to save our lives...
Claire was seated in front of an assemblage of people, all of them
facing her as she conducted her singles group, doling out advice with
every eye in the room on her. She was in her element, laughing with
them, smiling. She had seen all those faces so many times, calming
fixtures in her life.
"It always seems that people, no matter where they live, or how
long they evolve, will always have the same difficulties, the same
yearnings, the same failings, the same problems they have always had
through time. Being out here, in a cold void in the middle of nowhere,
hasn't changed the flaws that make us human. Or the need to connect
with someone, to find someone to love..."
Suddenly the joviality of the room paused, as the lights dimmed
momentarily, as the ship's power shifted. Within a second they could
feel the massive ship turning suddenly around them, feel it in the deck
beneath their feet, almost imperceptible but there. Claire looked
towards the ceiling, recognizing all the telltale signs, all the small
indicators. So to her, it was no surprise when suddenly the alarms rang
out, indicating the ship was under attack, yet again.
"Like I said, some things never change. Until... they do."
All across the hallways of the massive ship, people were running. Crew
members were taking battle stations. Lights flashed red on every deck.
Suddenly a bridge report came over the intercom, warning of incoming
fighters. The ship's artificial A.I. was already working, routing power
into weapons, sending massive amounts of energy into shields which
began to form invisibly around the ship's hull in the cold of space.
Weapon after weapon trained outwards along its surface into the starry
depths, away from the streaming glow of the nearby sun as the ship
turned to bring more guns to bear.
In her group, Claire's brow furrowed, slightly worried that they were
under attack again. With one last sympathetic glance at her group, she
got up from her chair, telling them to go back to their quarters. She,
however, was doing no such thing. She was going to the bridge to see
what was going on.
The Captain was tense now, standing behind one of the crewmen as he
leaned down and looked into the status display glowing red before both
of them, ignoring for a moment the vast veiwport stretching before
them. The Captain was all business, terse and too the point as he spoke
"What's the count..." he asked simply, his brow furrowed the same as
Claire's had been.
"Twenty six, twenty nine, now... still incoming, sir. Twenty seconds
out..." The young woman replied.
The Captain straightened up on the dim bridge, now gazing out the view
port at the shining cluster of moving points of light that had appeared
in the distance, glowing brighter as they twisted ever closer to the
"Engage at will, all batteries..."
Colored shafts of weapons fire arced out like luminous rain, shifting
direction to try to catch the incoming fighters. But the vast majority
of the shots missed, only a few explosions hitting in the attacking
cluster. The small points of light were dodging faster than the guns
"No joy, Captain. As usual,
they're just too fast..."
"And our squadrons?"
"Still grounded and under
repair after their last attack."
The Captain nodded to himself, resolve on his hard face. "This is gonna
be a rough one."
In the hallway outside, Claire tried to keep her balance as the massive
ship, which had always seemed so unshakable... shook. Alarms blared
everywhere. She was almost to the bridge, turning a corner where two
sentries suddenly pointed their assault rifles at her head when they
spotted her. They quickly lowered their weapons when they saw who it
was, waving her frantically through. One thing Claire Allen definitely
had, was bridge privileges. The ship shook again, a smaller one this
time. Claire tried to keep her pulse down, turning a corner into the
darkened bridge, before freezing at what she saw happening in silence
outside of the ship.
On the bridge, everyone seemed calm, the ship occasionally shaking in
the quiet. But silent through the veiwport, a fierce battle twisted and
sparkled in a maelstrom of light and motion. Claire swallowed. It all
seemed so simple below decks, but the ship's A.I. was putting up one
hell of a fight outside. The woman seated next to the Captain was
counting something down. The Captain still hadn't seen Claire there at
the back of the vast room. She moved closer to the veiwport, amazed at
the ship's massive firepower, and the ferocity of the battle.
"Twenty two, twenty one fighters now... Shields down, port quarter.
Hull taking damage." The female crewman spoke with a calmness Claire
certainly didn't feel as she walked up to them through the dozens of
stations across the wide bridge.
The Captain, however, took it in stride. "Send Damage teams down there.
Turn our injured side away from the attack vector and keep up the guns
on--... Oh. Hello, honey."
Claire was amazed at the simple smile the Captain gave her. "Hello,
He gazed fondly at her, trying to sound reassuring. It was completely
ineffective because of the dizzying battle visible through the veiwport
stretching behind him. "Don't worry, honey. We got it under control..."
Claire's recorded voice continued to speak, the song continuing with
"There's always adversity in life. Always things that challenge
you, challenge your perceptions. Always has been, I guess. We still
have to deal with challenges to live. And be surprised at our own
resilience. But then again, the things challenging us, can be surprised
by their own resilience too..."
"Conn... Contact. We have a second contact, another wave at 241 mark
"Damn it all! Shunt our reserves and prepare--" Captain Allen started
issuing orders, the tension ratcheting up on the bridge at the new
sensor contact. Claire tried to look past the battle, gazing out into
the stars, searching for it.
I turned on the radio, To
find you on satellite
I'm waiting for this sky to
fall, I'm waiting for a sign. All we are, is all so far...
Standing on the bridge, Claire's eyes searched across the stars. And
then she spotted it, one stationary light, flaring brighter for a
moment. Finally it was moving sideways across the heavens, trailing a
sparkling tail like a comet.
"And then I recognized it. Spotted it for the first time. Felt it
deep inside my heart. Something, that until that moment, I thought had
only existed in my dreams..."
(Cpt;"Ship, ID yourself."
Laugh on radio, voice answers. "Don't worry children. Daddy's home."
New ship dodges, zooms, expert flier, Claire watches from the bridge,
adniring skill as ship destroys all attackers.)
You're falling back to me,
You're a star that I can see,
I know you're out there,
Somewhere out there
(Does victory roll. Voice.
:"Did someone call for a rescue, 'cause your rescuer has arrived." They
give him permission to land.)
You're falling out of reach, Defying gravity
I know you're out there,
Somewhere out there
(Clr admiring flying skills:"I
want to meet him" Cpt gives her a look. Smiles. Voice over of Claire,
talking about hope. She goes back gets dressed, tries on different
shades of hair, including purple. Holo clothes follow on heras she
walks around, changing on her body. Maybe a clown suit? Comp:"Sorry Dr.
Hope you remember me when
you're home sick and need a change
I miss your purple hair, I
miss the way you taste
(Claire goes down to hanger
bay. Voice over continues about new things in life, tempered with old
experiences. She looks at soldiers with rifles, cautious. She's
nervous, wanting to meet this person. Checks watch.)
I know you'll come back
On a bed of nails I'll wait
(Cpt: "WHAT'S he doing?" as he listens. Beside him Ensign
says:"Singing." Cpt:"Singing what?" Ensign:"Italian." Ship flies
leisurely, for enjoyment. Cpt. :"Anytime you're ready..." Voice speaks
on radio:"Love flying. Can't get enough. Coming in...")
I'm praying that you don't
burn out, Or fade away
All we are, Is all so far
(Ship comes into hanger bay,
but before touchdown, pulls nose up and fires after burners higher,
flames spreading out on deck floor in a very flamboyant showy landing.)
You're falling back to me,
You're a star that I can see
I know you're out there,
Somewhere out there
(Cockpit comes up. Gaurds
raise rifles. Clr watches as cpt talks to smiling man. Cpt looks
shocked, then motions Clr over:"Claire, I think this is more your
area." Confused by that statement, Clr introduces herself, everyone
else gives man wary looks and steps away. Claire VO about things being
unexpected. Man smiles at Claire and gives his name. "Hi. Trevor Hale.
Cupid, god of love")
You're falling out of reach
(Music fades, end of page one)